Tuesday, December 1, 2009

The Best of Times, etc.

This photo has nothing to do with the post--I'm just so excited to see leaves that change color!

In high school English, we were supposed to read Charles Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities.  I read just enough to 1) Know that it was the best of times and it was the worst of times, 2) Understand why, when I took up knitting, my best friend nicknamed me Madame Defarge and 3) Make me want to actually read it now that I am an adult of my own free will.

The thing is...and this is a tragically lame comparison, I know...but I have been thinking about Dickens' words a lot lately in regards to this year.  It's been the best of times (being serenaded on Skype, falling in love with the handsomest, funniest, most thoughtful, understanding, best-dressed cowboy singer and all-around favorite man on the planet, being proposed to on bended knee with magnetic poetry, shopping for a wedding dress with my mom, taking a tour of photobooths on a roadtrip across the USA, a bachelorette party of two with my best friend, getting married in a WWII lookout shelter overlooking the Pacific Ocean on one miraculously unfoggy day in April, spending the summer on Flathead Lake with my new family and two of the best doggies ever, building a cozy little summer home above the garage, sharing all of this with family and friends at our reception and going away party in July, heading off into the sunset for a new life in Austin, TX, finding a new church and friends that welcomed us in, settling into our first apartment, making Thanksgiving dinner with each other like we dreamed of one year ago) and it's been the worst of times in some ways too...(learning to navigate a strange new city and way of life, being unemployed and unable to find a steady job for 9 months, wondering how we're going to make it, application after application, interview after interview, rejection after rejection, finding out how selfish I am when living side by side with another human being, facing up to my fears about love, marriage, new things, looking stupid, driving and everything else imaginable, starting completely over with every person I meet and finding myself without a reputation, a career, a common background, an image or some kind of attraction to stand on, missing my family and friends like they will never know).

 It's no Dickens tale, I know, but still.  In the best of times (and reflections thereupon) I feel toppled over with blessings and the vast, undeserved love of God poured out.  In the worst of times (and unrecommended reflections thereupon) I feel uncapable, abandoned, forgotten and alone.  I know through and through that God always loves and cares for us, but sometimes I don't understand when I can't see Him acting on that. 

Well, my mischievous husband just sneaked up from behind and scared the stuffing out of me and I seem to have lost my train of thought (which is bound to produce a "WOW" from said husband when I later catch him reading this post).  It doesn't matter much, because the conclusion of my story is and will always be that God is in control and I love Him and trust Him...Besides, Madame Defarge has a lot of knitting to do.  Thanks for indulging my rambling.  In the process of doing so, I discovered it is much easier and much more fun to recall the best of times.  I'm pretty sure they always outnumber the worst of times anyway.  And besides...my worst is circus peanuts compared to some people's...so I should just stop whining.

*Note to Mr. Dickens--I'm sorry I massacred your masterpiece.  One day soon I will actually read it and feel quite stupid, I'm sure.  Incidentally, I do hope your story's conclusion was the same as mine...


  1. Oh!! You should call your Etsy page Madame Defarge's Curiosity Shop. Or Shoppe.

  2. and circus peanuts are DELICIOUS!

    I *loved* reading that book in Mrs. Elsen's class. LOVE it! I want to read it again. Let's read it together!?

  3. Hehe, thanks Beth. You rock too! And that name is great--I've always wanted to have a 'shoppe' ;] Katie, I'd totally read it with you--blogging book club!!

  4. Can I join the club? Only...perhaps I ought to wait until you make a post-Dickens selection. I could not stand Great Expectations in high school...although maybe I've grown (?).

  5. You must join the club! I was hoping to start at the New Year...depending on whether or not I can find a dirt cheap copy or make my way to the library. Let's test our Dickens maturity, haha.

  6. If this book club hasn't started yet, I would love to join.